Mark Golden on Paint

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Open questions

31 July, 2008 (12:02) | Paint Ideas

It is wonderfully energizing here the level of response we’ve received so far for the OPEN Acrylic.  A number of great questions and reports from the arts community.  I thought I’d take a few of these on here.

“GOLDEN OPEN Acrylic dries matte…”  “GOLDEN OPEN Acrylic dries glossy…” – both correct.  I’m sure folks familiar with our philosophy around all our acrylic products… that unless we are specifically making a matte product, we will not add any additional filler or matting agents to our colors.  So the final sheen will vary depending upon the pigment used.  The pigment shape, structure and load will determine the final surface sheen.  We are not the first to do this.  Traditional fine art oil paints have the same tradition.  Those colors that are very fat, (a lot of oil) will be glossier than colors that are very lean.  In fact some of the very qualities of the organic look of an oil paint comes from the fact that colors will differ in their overall sheen versus having a complete overall sameness of sheen.  I realize this is not the answer that every artist would want, but our goal is not to dilute the color with other fillers that detract from the chroma or intensity of each individual pigment.  You can make your colors duller, more matte or more gloss with mediums or varnish but you are stuck with what the manufacturer gives you for pigment chroma.


The other question that came up was does the GOLDEN OPEN mix with water-miscible oils.  Yes, this product mixes with a lot of different products, some have even suggested that they can even mix traditional oil paints into our colors… Please don’t, and I’m not coming from an aesthetic side here… what you’ve created is a paint that is having to both dry by oxidation and by evaporation.  You have a paint that will be mixed to some greater or lesser degree that will have within the embedded structure much different levels of flexibility upon drying.  Clearly, we cannot predict the level of permanency of this sort of mixture.  I’m sure we will hear some anecdotal evidence that some mixtures are working out just great, especially at very low levels.  That’s wonderful, but I would tend to believe that it will lead to more problems than the aesthetic solution or alchemical thrill it might provide.  Just my guess.  I’m sure we will find ourselves having to test this in the future.




Comment from Mercia
Time: August 8, 2008, 10:00 am

As a NM painter, I’m thrilled to see the intro. of Open. Painting with standard acrylics in 10% rel. humidity can be frustrating! I’m just beginning to experiment with Open, but have one question: why no zinc white? I assume I can mix heavy body zinc white with Open medium or gel, but…..?

Comment from Mark
Time: August 8, 2008, 11:02 am

Mercia, you’ve got to share your results with us on the OPEN product. You will have the most critical test of the paint at this relative humidity! You will need to do some things to keep this open that others might not have to do… like working on a sealed substrate that won’t wick the vehicle out of the paint. You might need to work with the OPEN Thinner to keep some satisfactory open times.

Why no Zinc White? Good question. On the first pass for the formulations, it was such a complex challenge that we had to limit the palette. Already we are getting quite a few requests for the next round of colors. So if we can make the Zinc White stable in this formula I think it will have an excellent chance in the next round of colors. You can mix the HB Zinc White with the Open mediums or gel. And you are correct to assume that this mixture is not going to match the level of performance of OPEN. We’ll keep trying!!! And remember we have a Technical Support team here at Golden’s that would be glad to walk you through any issues you might have with the product. You can email them through our TechSupport site, or call toll free at 800 959 6543. Hope to hear from you soon!

Comment from Mercia
Time: August 20, 2008, 7:23 pm

Thank you Mark. I’m still a newbie with this medium, but experiments so far have confirmed that using a softer brush (synth or watercolor) is helpful, and I’ve also discovered that working with palette knife is very satisfying. Open really helps in this low humidity! It will probably help A LOT during a plein air workshop that Jakki Kouffman is giving in Taos in September! I’ll let you know.

Comment from Mark
Time: August 22, 2008, 3:49 pm

Mercia, Taos will be a great workout for the OPEN… Please let us know how it worked! Best, Mark

Comment from Mercia
Time: August 28, 2008, 4:25 pm

My Teacher (Jakki Kauffman) suggested starting with the OPEN medium, gel and thinner first, and three primaries (I got napthol red, hansa yellow opaque, and thalo blue green shade). I mixed Tit. white and mars black 50/50 with OPEN gel to slow and extend them. I feel they also improved opacity in the mixes. I really appreciate the ability to mix OPEN with my considerable investment in standard Golden acrylics and mediums!
My first try was painted in OPEN (50/50 w/ open gel) with a palette knife over a very thinly painted HB acryl. plein aire sketch (awful) from last year. It’s on 300# Arches hot press sealed with GAC100. 18″X14″. I think I’ll continue to use std. acryl. for thin underpainting as it dries in ~5min. out here and I like being able to move right into the final painting without waiting. This painting was done in about 2 hrs., and I had no trouble going back over several area in only 20-30 mins. without ‘lifting’ the previous layer as long as I used a LIGHT touch. I’ve also switched from hog bristle to a softer synth. brush to get the same light touch. Paint on my covered palette still wet! I really enjoy OPEN so far!

Comment from Mercia
Time: August 28, 2008, 4:33 pm

Oh, I forgot to mention… There’s a very interesting thread running in the Acrylics Forum of comparing painters experiences using OPEN and A. Interactive. You might find a lot of useful feedback there if you haven’t already.

Comment from Mark
Time: September 5, 2008, 3:21 pm

Mercia, thanks for the forum. It is an incredibly interesting vibrant community out there, sort of like the wild west. But truly a great resource to see how artists are responding.

Comment from marjut
Time: September 23, 2016, 11:37 am

please tell me if I can use any product (medium, or gac100) to seal old elastic bands which I have made a big art piece out of the elastics are aging and drying so would like to cover them with some product to seal. thanks

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